Are Investors Buying or Selling Verizon Communications Inc. (VZ), and What Should You Do?

Recent insider trends for Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) have caught the attention of investors. Analysts study insider data to get a sense of sense of what key shareholders think about the outlook for a particular stock. In the case of VZ, the data has some interesting implications for where the stock might be headed.

Institutions own 63.26% of Verizon Communications Inc. (VZ)’s shares. The total value of these holdings, in millions, is $126,099. Among active positions in the latest quarter, 895 holders increased their positions by a total of 120.06 million shares, 982 holders decreased the positions by a total of 128.3 million shares, and 155 holders held their positions. This works out to a net decrease in ownership of 8.24 million shares, and suggests that institutions are feeling bearish about the stock.

Among new and sold out positions, 93 holders initiated new positions by a total of 10.9 million shares and 110 holders exited their positions by a total of 11.29 million shares. This nets out to a decrease of 382224 shares and is another bearish sign for VZ.

In the last three months, insiders executed a total of 3 trades. 3 were sells. Insider ownership decreased by a total of 1830 shares, which suggests that VZ’s key executives are feeling less optimistic about the outlook for the stock. The data from the past twelve months tells a similar story: insiders executed 28 sells, and ownership decreased by a net of 285910 shares.

Analysts often look at short interest, or the number of shares currently being shorted by investors, to aid in their outlook for a particular stock. Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ)’s short interest is 38.65 million shares, or 0.95% of the float. This represents an increase of 4% in the number of shares being shorted compared to the previous reading, and implies that investors felt more pessimistic about the stock during the past two weeks.

In light of the insider ownership and trading data it makes sense to consider technicals to see if they come to a similar conclusion about the outlook for VZ. A composite of 13 technical indicators that includes measures such as moving averages and momentum oscillators suggests that VZ is a hold, which implies that VZ is expected to perform in line with the market based on prior trading patterns.


Institutional ownership trends suggest that the stock is cheap and the insider trading data indicates that insiders are bearish. Technical indicators (also) suggest that Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) is fairly valued.

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